Life is full of challenges and often we are able to rise to the occasion and overcome our trials. However, there are times when we feel overwhelmed by our circumstances. During these times, we realize that we are weak and vulnerable. What causes these dark times to happen? What can we do? Scripture provides some insights for us.
Sometimes our suffering is a direct result of our own poor choices, such as when David succumbed to temptation and slept with another man’s wife. He continued to yield to temptation by attempting to cover up his sin with various schemes. At last, David confessed and repented of his sins, but there was the consequence of losing a child. It was only after David confessed his sin and repented that he was set free from his guilt and was able to finally move forward (2 Sam 11-12) .
At other times we need to adjust our focus. A good example is found in the book of Job. Job was living in fear and focusing on the negative. His fear became his focus and performance became his “god”. “What I feared has come upon me; what I dreaded has happened to me” (Job 3:25 NIV). Only when he experienced the loss of family, health, goods, and reputation did his focus change. He met YHVH personally and YHVH became his focus. And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you (Phil 4:8-9 NLT).
Another source of adversity is when we build false strongholds. We rely on something or someone else besides YHVH to protect us. When we are threatened or injured, we tend to develop strategies and attitudes to keep from further injury. The strategies become our “god” and the attitudes, instead of insulating us from further hurt, only trap us and make a dark place for the enemy to reside. We know from Yeshua that “[t]he thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full (John 10:10 NIV). Through deliverance and inner healing, we can remove the darkness and step into the light.
Yeshua promised us that we would endure persecution for following Him (Matt 10:16-23). The apostles suffered much persecution and many of our brothers and sisters today are suffering severely. We must be ready to endure whatever is required of us (1 Pet 3:13-17). Yeshua endured tremendous persecution during his time on earth, yet He kept His focus on His Father and Abba’s promises to Him. As a result of His faithfulness, He is exceedingly glorified and we are tremendously blessed (1 Pet 3:18-22).
Whatever the cause of our darkness, the solution is always to turn to YHVH and put our trust in Him. YHVH will take what is meant for evil and produce glorious good for us (Gen 50:20; Rom 8:28).